Understanding DSTs: Leveraging Them for 1031 Exchanges

Understanding DSTs: Leveraging Them for 1031 Exchanges

DST stands for Delaware Statutory Trust, a legal entity established according to Delaware law. It is important to note that the property and investors associated with a DST are not required to be situated in Delaware. In a DST, every investor possesses a stake in the Trust, which ultimately holds ownership of the property.

These investors are referred to as "beneficiaries" of the Trust. Consequently, the ownership rights held by investors in a DST are known as "beneficiary interests." Notably, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) treats DST beneficiary interests as equivalent to direct property ownership, thereby making them eligible for a 1031 exchange.

1031 Exchange Explained

Financial advisor explaining 1031 exchange and Delaware Statutory Trust to a couple

A 1031 exchange is a tax deferral strategy widely employed by real estate investors to optimize their investments. It entails utilizing the proceeds obtained from the sale of an investment property to acquire another property that is considered "like-kind" in the eyes of the tax code.

By engaging in a 1031 exchange, investors can defer the payment of capital gains taxes that would typically arise from the sale of their assets. This allows them to retain a larger portion of their proceeds from a sale, facilitating the creation of a more diverse investment portfolio.

In the context of Delaware Statutory Trusts (DSTs), 1031 exchanges present a unique opportunity to expand one's investment horizon and potentially access high-value properties. DSTs offer a vehicle for investors with limited funds to participate in the ownership of premium commercial properties, such as retail spaces, apartment complexes, and industrial facilities. By pooling their resources together in a DST, individual investors gain the ability to collectively acquire these sought-after properties.

Once an investor becomes a beneficiary in a DST and holds passive ownership in a high-dollar property, the benefits of a 1031 exchange continue to play a significant role. By leveraging subsequent 1031 exchanges, investors can defer their tax liabilities and effectively roll their investment gains into additional high-end assets. This strategy enables them to perpetuate the growth of their investment portfolio while deferring the payment of capital gains taxes until a future date.

DST’s Explained

In order for a Delaware Statutory Trust (DST) to qualify under Section 1031 for a like-kind exchange, there are key guidelines set forth by the IRS. These guidelines include:

1. Unlimited Beneficiaries: While the number of beneficiaries in a DST is generally capped at 499 in practice, there is no strict limit imposed by the IRS.

2. Trustee Decision-Making: The Trustee of the DST is responsible for making material decisions, rather than the individual investors. This structure ensures a centralized decision-making process.

3. Passive Real Estate Holding: The DST operates as a passive holder of real estate. Trustees have limited powers, and beneficiaries (investors) do not have authority over property operations.

The DST structure offers several structural advantages, including:

Old weighing scale representing the advantages of Delaware Statutory Trust (DSTs) in a 1031 exchange

1. Limited Liability: Similar to a limited liability company (LLC) or corporation, the DST structure protects investors from personal liabilities beyond their investment amount.

2. Bankruptcy Protection: The DST structure safeguards individual investors from creditors pursuing the DST's debts. It also prevents investors from placing liens on the DST's property, providing additional protection to mortgage lenders and other beneficiaries.

3. Centralized Control: Major decisions within the DST are made by a single Trustee, eliminating concerns or disagreements among investors.

4. Single Borrower: The DST acts as the sole borrower and owns 100% of the property. This simplifies the process of obtaining a mortgage, as there is no need to coordinate multiple borrowers.

5. Permissible Number of Investors: DSTs can accommodate a large number of beneficiaries, with no strict limit imposed by the IRS (though it is typically capped at 499). This allows for the purchase of institutional quality properties, spread across a larger number of investors, and provides the advantage of lower investment minimums.

6. Pre-Packaged Investments: DSTs often offer pre-acquired properties with mortgages already in place. This simplifies the investment process for investors using 1031 exchange funds, as they can easily purchase fractional DST investments without the complexities of property acquisition and mortgage arrangements.

These guidelines and structural advantages make DSTs an attractive option for investors seeking the benefits of a like-kind exchange while enjoying limited liability, centralized control, and access to institutional-grade properties.

While the Delaware Statutory Trust (DST) structure offers numerous advantages, it is important to note the limitations that must be considered for qualification in a 1031 exchange. These prohibitions include:

1. Capital Contributions: Once the DST is closed, investors are not permitted to make additional capital contributions to the trust.

2. Loan Terms: The Trustee of the DST cannot renegotiate the terms of existing loans or secure new funds through borrowing.

3. Proceeds from Property Sales: If a property owned by the DST is sold, the Trustee is obligated to return the proceeds to the investors rather than reinvesting them in another property.

4. Capital Expenditures: The DST is restricted in terms of capital expenditures it can make on its properties. These expenditures are typically limited to normal repair and maintenance, non-structural improvements, and those mandated by law.

5. Investment of Cash: Cash held by the DST between distributions to investors can only be invested in short-term debt securities such as US Treasury bills.

6. Cash Distribution: With the exception of reserves, all cash must be regularly distributed to the beneficiaries (investors).

7. Leases: The Trustee is prohibited from entering into new leases or renegotiating existing leases.

Despite these limitations, fractional property investments through DSTs remain an appealing option for investors engaged in 1031 exchanges. This structure enables investors to participate in larger, higher-quality assets that might be otherwise out of their reach. Additionally, the pre-packaged nature of DSTs simplifies the investment process and helps investors meet the strict timelines required for exchanges. It is worth noting that DSTs are generally best suited for investors seeking longer-term, passive investment opportunities.

General Disclosure

Not an offer to buy, nor a solicitation to sell securities. All investing involves risk of loss of some or all principal invested. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Speak to your finance and/or tax professional prior to investing. Any information provided is for informational purposes only.

Securities offered through Emerson Equity LLC Member: FINRA/SIPC. Only available in states where Emerson Equity LLC is registered. Emerson Equity LLC is not affiliated with any other entities identified in this communication. 

1031 Risk Disclosure: 

Risk Assessment for Retirement Planning: What to Know

As you approach retirement, there are a variety of important considerations to keep in mind, not just whether or not to take up pickleball. One of the biggest worries for many retirees is ensuring their funds last throughout their retirement. To help achieve financial stability in retirement, it's important to understand and prepare for a range of risk factors, including inflation, market fluctuations, lifespan, spending habits, and health. This can be achieved through a comprehensive risk assessment.

By taking a closer look at each of these risk factors, you can better understand their potential impact on your retirement funds and create a more secure financial plan for your golden years.

Risk Factors of Retirement

Longevity, or living a longer lifespan, can have a significant impact on retirement planning. As life expectancies continue to increase, the likelihood of outliving one's retirement savings becomes a growing concern. This means that individuals must plan for a potentially longer period of time in which they will need to have a steady source of income.

To prepare for a longer lifespan, retirees should consider strategies such as delaying the age at which they start drawing Social Security, which can increase their monthly payments. Additionally, investing in a lifetime income annuity can provide a guaranteed source of income for the future.

It's important for retirees to factor in the possibility of a longer lifespan when planning for retirement, as it can have a major impact on the sustainability of their financial security in their later years.


Market Volatility and Market Risk are two key factors that can greatly impact your retirement funds. Market volatility refers to the fluctuations and instability of the financial market, and market risk is the chance that your investments will lose value. Market risk is a common concern among retirees, as they have limited time to make up for any losses.

For instance, if the stock market experiences a downturn, your portfolio value could decrease, leaving you with less money for retirement. Market volatility can also make it difficult to determine when to invest, when to sell, and when to take distributions. This uncertainty can lead to fear and indecision, and may cause you to miss out on growth opportunities.

Additionally, market risk can also impact your investment strategy, as you may need to reduce your exposure to equities as you approach retirement. This can limit your potential for growth, but can also reduce your market risk, allowing you to preserve your retirement savings.

Overall, market volatility and market risk are critical considerations for retirees, and it's important to have a solid understanding of how they may impact your retirement funds. This can help you make informed investment decisions and ensure that your retirement is secure and comfortable.

Inflation is one of the most significant risk factors associated with retirement. Inflation refers to the general rise in prices over time, which can erode the purchasing power of your savings and retirement funds. This means that your hard-earned money may not be able to buy as much in the future as it can today. Over time, the cost of living, including housing, healthcare, and food expenses, can increase, leaving retirees struggling to make ends meet.

Retirees are particularly vulnerable to inflation, as they rely on fixed sources of income, such as pensions or Social Security, which may not keep pace with rising costs. This is why it's crucial to factor in inflation when planning for retirement. To mitigate the effects of inflation, some retirees choose to invest in assets that have the potential to grow with inflation, such as stocks, real estate, and commodities.

Others may choose to use a combination of both fixed and growth investments to balance their portfolios and reduce market risk. It's also important to plan for unexpected expenses, such as medical costs, which can rise rapidly with inflation. By considering the effects of inflation on your retirement plans, you can ensure that your nest egg will last throughout your Golden Years.

Overspending is a common risk factor that can greatly affect retirement funds. It is important to create a budget and stick to it, especially during retirement when there is no steady source of income. Overspending can quickly drain retirement savings and leave individuals struggling to make ends meet. It is important to have a clear understanding of monthly expenses and make adjustments where necessary to ensure that retirement funds last throughout their lifetime.

It's also a good idea to prioritize essential expenses such as healthcare and housing, and reduce spending on non-essential items such as dining out, entertainment, and travel. By staying disciplined with spending and making adjustments as needed, individuals can mitigate the risk of overspending and ensure a stable financial future during retirement.


Healthcare Expenses can have a significant impact on retirement, especially as people age and require more medical care. The cost of healthcare is constantly rising and it can be difficult to predict exactly how much you may need to set aside for medical expenses in retirement.

Some people may have chronic health conditions that require ongoing treatment, while others may require more significant medical care in the form of hospital stays or surgeries. Additionally, long-term care expenses, such as nursing homes or assisted living facilities, can also be a major drain on retirement savings.

To mitigate the impact of healthcare expenses on your retirement, it's important to plan ahead and prepare for the unexpected. This may involve setting aside money in a dedicated healthcare account or investing in a long-term care insurance policy.

You should also take an honest look at your own health history and consider factors such as your lifestyle, genetics, and overall health, to better estimate your healthcare expenses in retirement. Additionally, it's important to stay informed about changes in the healthcare industry and be proactive in managing your healthcare expenses as you age.

Making Preparations

Proactive preparation for the potential risks of retirement can help you strive for a more secure financial future. Consulting with financial advisors or estate planners may provide you with expert insight and personalized strategies to potentially manage these risks and attempt to safeguard your retirement savings.

General Disclosure

Not an offer to buy, nor a solicitation to sell securities. All investing involves risk of loss of some or all principal invested. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Speak to your finance and/or tax professional prior to investing. Any information provided is for informational purposes only.

Securities offered through Emerson Equity LLC Member: FINRA/SIPC. Only available in states where Emerson Equity LLC is registered. Emerson Equity LLC is not affiliated with any other entities identified in this communication.

Manufactured housing Investments Are Becoming More Popular

Due to a lack of accessible housing options nationwide, purchasers are looking for practical, cost-effective alternatives to stick-built homes. Manufactured homes are just one option that is becoming more and more appealing. Since the days of the mobile home parks, manufactured housing has advanced significantly. Higher-end prefabricated houses that are almost indistinguishable from their foundation-built counterparts are replacing the cookie-cutter, one-story "trailers" that formerly had a bad reputation.

In this essay, we examine the development of the manufactured home market, the factors driving current demand, and the reasons that both individual owner-occupants and institutional investors are interested in this business.

What is Manufactured Housing?

A portion of the residential housing market is made up of manufactured homes. A manufactured house is a structure that has been mostly or totally built in a climate-controlled facility off-site. Units can be put together either on-site or off, however the latter requires flatbed delivery of the house to its ultimate location. Instead of being anchored into more substantial foundations, the majority of prefabricated houses are constructed on top of concrete slabs or mobile platforms. As a result, prefabricated housing needs to be tethered to the ground or otherwise secured.

Building costs are often reduced by efficiencies brought about by the off-site, assembly-line-style construction procedure. When compared to conventional residential structures, prefabricated homes are more economical since these cost savings may be transferred to the end users.

A particular kind of prefabricated housing is modular housing. In essence, modular construction uses a "kit of parts" strategy, wherein different building categories (such as kitchens, bathrooms, and bedrooms) are built using lean processes, and each of these modules is then combined with the others, depending on the needs of the home builder or buyer, and shipped to the location to be put together on-site.

Manufactured housing, as opposed to typical mobile houses, may be found in a variety of sizes and forms. The size of a home might range from 500 square feet to 3,000 square feet or more. Depending on the requirements, they may be created in a matter of days or weeks and can be constructed with a variety of materials, amenities, and finishes. Some tasks might take months to finish.

A Look Into Manufactured Housing History

Over the past 50 years, manufactured housing has advanced significantly, especially as technology has advanced and enabled more efficient industrial building methods. Traditionally, stick-built homes were regarded to be of higher quality than manufactured homes. The quality of prefabricated homes today is frequently comparable to other entry-level residences.

Furthermore, the majority of prefabricated homes in land-lease communities throughout the 1970s and 1980s. An owner/operator would "lease" the land to a homeowner who would then use a personal property loan to buy the house that was built on that particular piece of property. In the modern era, more than half of prefabricated houses are sold to purchasers who then set up the homes on privately held properties, including more conventional residential developments.

This movement is due to a few factors: First, compared to those constructed in earlier decades, modern prefabricated homes are frequently bigger and more appealing. As a result, these houses mix in perfectly with both established and more recent residential neighborhoods. Many people who own a piece of property choose to have their dream home delivered rather than waiting to build one, which may save both time and money. Second, prefabricated homes are a product category that has gained popularity among consumers of all stripes as the available choices have increased. Mobile houses or manufactured homes are no longer regarded as affordable accommodation for tenants or buyers with modest incomes.

Drivers of Manufactured Housing Demand

A resurgence in manufactured houses is taking place. This specialized product category is beginning to draw interest from consumers, both individual and institutional, for a number of reasons.

Better Product Quality: Modern prefabricated homes are constructed in climate-controlled facilities under stringent quality control and oversight at every stage of the process. Due to this, product quality has increased, especially in terms of durability and energy efficiency. Granite countertops, central air conditioning, and high-end appliances are examples of modern materials, conveniences, and finishes that may be implemented into prefabricated houses of various sizes. The higher product quality has frequently rendered prefabricated homes identical to their stick-built counterparts.
Reduction of Regulatory Barriers: For many years, the development of prefabricated housing communities was hampered by widespread and continuous resistance to manufactured houses. The resistance to manufactured housing has decreased as product quality has increased, making it more possible for consumers to invest in or buy manufactured housing for their own use and enjoyment.
Lack of Entry-Level Home: Manufactured housing offers a feasible entry-level housing choice amid the nation's affordable housing crisis, especially in coastal cities like Florida where workforce housing is getting harder to find. Comparing manufactured homes to conventional stick-built homes, their construction costs are around half as much per square foot. Because of this, prefabricated homes are a desirable alternative for both renters and first-time purchasers.

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Broad Appeal: Manufactured housing appeals to a variety of demographics, not only first-time homeowners. The market for prefabricated houses is being driven by Baby Boomers, particularly those wishing to downsize or retire in warmer regions.
Low Vacancy Rates: The vacancy rate of current manufactured home communities has drastically decreased due to the scarcity of cheap housing choices and the rising popularity of manufactured homes. The vacancy rate in prefabricated housing communities in coastal cities like Miami, San Jose, Denver, and Salt Lake City reportedly stayed around or below 1% last year, according to a recent Marcus & Millichap research.
Rents are going up: Land-lease prefabricated house owners have been able to raise rents due to a lack of available inventory. In a recent study, 93 percent of operators predicted that rents will remain the same or increase in 2020. With a 4.6 percent increase, the Northeast outpaced the rest of the country in terms of rent growth. The Gulf Coast and Mountain Region both had 4.5 percent increases from the previous year. In certain areas, lot rent in coastal towns is starting to nudge closer to $1,000 per month.
Housing manufactured as an investment

It should come as no surprise that investors are beginning to think about include prefabricated housing communities in their portfolios given the demand factors mentioned above. This is especially true now that these developments are being managed better. Most prefabricated housing communities were until recently locally owned and run, sometimes by untrained mom and pop investors. These communities are now being purchased by more seasoned investors, including DST sponsor businesses, who are also bringing in professional management. By doing this, they put themselves in a stronger position to work on raising rents and, consequently, property values, which, if attained, may then be transferred to investors.

Larger investors are joining the game as the value of prefabricated home communities becomes increasingly obvious. Four new REITs were established in 1994, the first ones created particularly to invest in this product category (Manufactured Home Communities, ROC Communities, SUN Communities, and Chateau Properties). These REITs are still performing better than many of their more established residential REIT competitors. Today, a number of other REITs have added prefabricated housing to their portfolios.

Additionally, manufactured homes are increasingly regarded as reliable investments. The majority of land-lease communities feature constant (and rising) rents and little turnover. According to some estimates, over 90% of land-leased manufactured home communities are occupied.

The Future of Manufactured Housing

The future is bright for prefabricated homes, maybe brighter than ever. The dearth of affordable housing choices in the country can actually increase the attraction of prefabricated houses.

From an investing standpoint, individuals need to be ready for yields to compress. The majority of the top-notch manufactured home communities have already been acquired as more institutional capital has entered the market. Cap rates have already started to decline. In response, a lot of investors are increasingly purchasing smaller, less desirable areas with the intention of expanding or adding value.


The appearance of manufactured homes has drastically changed over the past several decades. Modern prefabricated homes are luxurious yet reasonably priced. Individual buyers, tenants, and investors of various sizes are drawn to them. Nevertheless, despite the industry's increasing popularity, there is still a lot of room for growth, especially at a time when other residential product categories are also seeing growth. People will always need a place to live, and if more economical choices aren't available, prefabricated houses can be a popular choice.

Perch Wealth collaborates with sizable, seasoned, and qualified DST sponsor businesses that provide accredited investors wishing to invest their 1031 exchange funds with manufactured housing investment possibilities. To learn more about this asset class and investing prospects, get in touch with Perch Wealth right away.

General Information

neither a buy-side nor a sell-side solicitation of securities. The material presented here is purely for informational purposes and shouldn't be used to guide financial decisions. Every investment has the chance of losing part or all of the money. Future outcomes cannot be predicted based on past performance. Prior to investing, consult a financial or tax expert.

Financial products made available by Emerson Equity LLC Member: SIPC/FINRA. Only accessible in states where Emerson Equity LLC has a recognized business presence. There are no other organizations mentioned in this correspondence with whom Emerson Equity LLC is associated.

1031 Risk Disclosure: * There is no assurance that any strategy will be effective or achieve investment goals; * Property value loss is a possibility for all real estate investments over the course of ownership; * Tax status may change depending on the income stream and depreciation schedule for any investment property. All funded real estate investments involve the risk of going into foreclosure; adverse tax rulings may prevent capital gains from being deferred and result in immediate tax liability;
1031 exchanges are illiquid assets since they are frequently issued through private placement offers. There is no secondary market for these investments. * Reduction or Elimination of Monthly Cash Flow Distributions - Similar to any real estate investment, the possibility of suspension of cash flow distributions exists in the event that a property unexpectedly loses tenants or suffers significant damage; * The impact of fees and expenditures - The costs of the transaction might have an influence on investors' returns and even surpass the tax advantages.